The Weirdness of Corporate Food: Now You Can Have Your Cookies and Drink Them, Too
Oreo is marketed as "milk’s favorite cookie," but what if you could simplify things even further? Cut down the process of actually buying milk and cookies and just sip it through a straw.
In case chewing Girl Scouts cookies has become too tedious for you, you can now chug down Caramel Coconut or Thin Mint-flavored Nesquik. Ideally, you’d dip your Girl Scouts cookies right into the bottle, but a sip of sugary milk can do. The beverage, which is branded with the Girl Scouts' logo, contains 300 calories per bottle and a whopping 48 grams of sugar. The product is branded for "adults": adults drinking liquid Girl Scouts cookies.
While Girl Scouts cookies are indeed tasty, if not wildly unhealthy (cue an 8-year-old at your door talking about the merits of sugar-free lemon cookies), some of the charm is buying the cookies from a neighbor raising funds for her local troop. Buying a Nesquik product with similar flavors as your co-worker’s daughter’s first entrepreneurial endeavor is not the same. What if Nesquik began producing homemade brownie-flavored milk to sell as a replacement for school bake sales?
But turning food into drink isn’t the only way this flavor and consistency reversal works. For those who want a crunch with their coffee, Lay’s offered cappuccino-flavored potato chips earlier this year. Because solid-food flavored chips aren’t good enough?
Of the four finalists in the company’s “Do us a flavor” contest, Wasabi Ginger ended up winning. Perhaps because the flavor wasn’t reminiscent of a beverage. Or is it a trendy cocktail? Cappuccino, one of the top four flavors, was submitted by a New Yorker, though the general tone of the Internet was #WTF.
But the strangely branded drink-eat hybrids are not all bad news. Christina Tosi, who develops recipes for David Chang’s Momofuku Milk Bar was put on the dessert radar for her cereal milk: bottles of cornflake-flavored milk that takes away the actual effort of making your milk taste like cereal—no flakes involved! Lines crowd out the door for soft serve made from cereal milk and New Yorkers chug it by the pint.
The recipe for the $5 milk sold at the store reveals 30 grams of sugar per 100 grams of cornflakes, but this neighborhood bakery has seen pretty good growth (it has four New York locations and ships nationwide) thanks to its drinkable sweets.
Maybe if we leave cookies to the Girl Scouts and the real bakers, and milk to the cows, America’s food situation would look a little less grim.